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Hummel sends Germany in semis

International Sports

Hummels goal sets Brazil date Hummels goal sets Brazil date Germany progressed to the semi-finals of the World Cup as Mats Hummels scored the decisive goal in a 1-0 victory against France.

Hummels scored the only goal of the game when he flicked on Toni Kroos’ cross from just beyond the penalty spot, past the despairing dive of Hugo Lloris.

Germany had started the game with a much-changed formation. Miroslav Klose started up front, supported by Thomas Mueller, Sami Khedira anchored the midfield, and Philip Lahm moved back to the right-back position.

France went close with a Mathieu Valbuena volley and Karim Benzema shot, but Manuel Neuer was flustered by neither.

The second half was depressingly dour. Didier Deschamps was so reticent to make a change that he did not make a substitution until the 72nd minute, and then only to replace Mamadou Sakho for Laurent Koscielny. Moments later, Loic Remy, was introduced, but it demonstrated the lack of nous from the side as a whole.

It wasn’t enough, and France appeared only mildly concerned about looking for a goal. Their lethargic performance ensured an easy victory for Germany.

Germany are through to the semi-finals of the World Cup for a fourth successive time.

France have not beaten Germany in a World Cup since 1958.

This is only France’s second loss to Germany since 1987.

Didier Deschamps waited more than 70 minutes before making an attacking change.

France made it easy for Germany. France seemed to focus on playing passes over the top for players to chase, which was too simple an approach to beat a defence reinforced by Philip Lahm at right-back.

Mathieu Valbuena and Antoine Griezmann best on the counterattack, once Germany could sit back, France should have made their changes far earlier in the second half.

Mats Hummels (Germany): Hummels’ winner was clearly the most important act of the game, but his defensive contribution extended to last-minute tackles and blocks from close range. If Manchester United do manage to sign him this summer they look to have an adequate replacement for Nemanja Vidic.

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